Tarragon Theatre's 1998-99 season will include four world premieres, a Canadian premiere and a Toronto premiere.
The four new works are It's all True by Jason Sherman, whose most recent play Patience is currently packing them in at Tarragon, an adaptation by Paul Bettis of Colette's Cherie, Belle by Florence Gibson and Kilt by Jonathan Wilson.
Sherman's It's All True has been in development with Necessary Angel Theatre Company (Necessary's artistic director Richard Rose will direct the Tarragon production) and was well received during a workshop recently. Based on the historic censorship battle that erupted over Marc Blitzstein's 1937 musical The Cradle Will Rock (there were unsuccessful attempts to stop this "propaganda musical" from being performed on Broadway,) Sherman pits artist against government.
Cheri is billed as an atmospheric recreation of 1920s Paris in a world dominated by fascinating women, while Belle is set at the end of America's civil war and is about two freed slaves who travel north from Georgia to start over again. Kilt offers a highland dance teacher and her son, a gay table-dancer, in a comedy that explores family connections.
The Canadian premiere is Shelagh Stephenson's The Memory of Water, a comedy about three sisters in Northern England. Stephenson is a new British writer whose next play has been commissioned by the Royal National Theatre and whose work has been well received by the British press. Janet Munsil's Emphysema (A Love Story) premiered at Alberta Theatre Projects, where it received strong reviews. It's a contemporary love story with a difference, about an English writer and an aging legendary movie goddess who meet up for a magazine profile.
Also offered next season is a stage version of Margaret Atwood's Good Bones, performed by Clare Coulter, in what amounts to a celebration of two unique voices.
And as an extra treat, the multi-talented Daniel Brooks takes on Goethe's Faust in a public workshop offering limited performances.
Opening dates: Emphysema (A Love Story), September 29; Good Bones, October 20; The Memory of Water, November 10; It's All True, January 6/99; Cheri, January 19/99; Belle, March 2/99; Kilt, April 20/98; Faust, performance dates TBA.
For information and tickets call: 416-531-1827.
By Mira Friedlander